AZA lawyers have handled many healthcare high stakes cases and trials for providers and doctors. We’ve represented practice groups, hospitals and labs. We’ve handled staff and pay issues, Medicaid and Medicare issues, managed care contracts, qui tam and whistleblowers, and more.
We’ve been retained by a national doctor’s group TeamHealth to handle litigation around the country against insurers for underpayment. In December 2021 AZA won a $62.65 million jury verdict in Las Vegas on behalf of emergency room doctors cheated by United Healthcare affiliates. This was the third AZA win for TeamHealth and a long-anticipated showdown with the largest U.S. insurer that may alter the landscape of dozens of other similar cases around the country. Texas Lawbook featured the Nevada case as the top story in Top Commercial Litigation in 2021 . See also AZA Victorious in $62 Million Nationally Watched TeamHealth Trial Against Insurance Giant United Healthcare. See also “Nevada Trial Culminates with Jury Ordering UnitedHealthcare to Pay TeamHealth Doctors $60 million in Punitive Damages.”
Coverage of the trial included the Associated Press’ Nevada jury: Health insurers owe ER doctors $60M in damages and Nevada jury says health insurer undercut ER reimbursements. See also Texas Lawbook stories (subscription required) UnitedHealthcare Hit with $60M Punitive Verdict in Nevada Suit by ER doctors, “Vegas Jury Awards TeamHealth Millions, Says ‘Yes’ to Punis,” “TeamHealth Trial: A Threat, A Delay, A Juror Down” and “AZA Begins Next TeamHealth Trial in Sin City” .
In June 2021, AZA successfully represented emergency room physicians in obtaining a $19.1 million Houston jury verdict against a large insurance company in the first case in the nation to litigate emergency room physicians’ out-of-network pay from private insurance companies under the Affordable Care Act. The case was covered in the media by Texas Lawyer in ‘Designate a Villain’: The Legal Strategy That Led a Houston Jury to Award $19M to ER Docs in Insurance Dispute (subscription required), by Law 360 in Jury Awards $19M To Doc Staffing Co. In Reimbursement Row (subscription required) and by Texas Lawbook in Houston Jury Awards TeamHealth $19.1M in Trial Over ER Doc Pay (subscription required).
In August 2020, AZA successfully represented emergency room doctors in obtaining a $9.4 million jury verdict against an Arkansas insurance company in a case in which the insurance company grossly underpaid emergency room doctors. AZA was hired six days before trial. A similar case will be tried soon in Harris County. See the Texas Lawbook story on this win Six Days Notice, Six Witnesses, Six Jurors, 150 ER Doctors, Two Ticked Off In-House Counsel and a $9.4M Verdict (subscription required).
We represent healthcare and pharmaceutical providers, and private equity groups, in all types of matters. This includes partnership and corporate governance disputes; payer and provider litigation; restrictive covenant claims; False Claims Act litigation and investigation; vendor and service provider disputes; and in government investigations.
Recently we defeated an eight-figure False Claims Act case on a motion to dismiss; led the charge in taking on an 8-figure billing dispute for a healthcare company with its carrier; successfully removed the head of a healthcare practice in a contentious corporate governance dispute; defeated multimillion dollars claims brought by a medical director against their group; and spearheaded a response to a six-month regulatory investigation that resulted in a no further action letter and an exoneration of the company.
We have also advised on partnership formation and dissolution; roll-ups of private equity healthcare entities; healthcare company employee policies and agreements; and on government investigations.
Our healthcare industry work includes:
- AZA successfully represented a local clinical laboratory and its owner against the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Granting a summary judgment motion AZA filed on its client’s behalf, a federal district court reversed an HHS administrative decision that could have excluded AZA’s client from participating in federal healthcare programs for 15 years.
- We obtained a multimillion–dollar settlement in breach of fiduciary duty case against former hospital administrators. Case settled without a single court hearing after AZA conducted aggressive early discovery into financial mismanagement claims.
- AZA has represented various medical practices at the institutional and provider level in false claim qui tam cases (under federal and state law). In each instance, AZA quickly investigated the claims, aggressively responded to the allegations, and secured favorable settlements for its clients. In one instance, plaintiffs were forced to file three separate complaints after AZA filed three motions to dismiss at the beginning of the case. The case settled shortly after the filing of the third motion to dismiss.